Monday, August 29, 2016

Vol State Enrollment Breaks Record in Cookeville

Vol State Cookeville student registration has reached a record high for all community college enrollment at the Cookeville Higher Education Campus (CHEC). There are 1031 students enrolled for the fall semester. The previous high for community college enrollment was 903 in fall of 2015. Vol State has been adding some popular courses, including Microbiology, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and Mechatronics.

“Things are going exceedingly well. It’s because of the help of civic organizations, education partners and workforce partners in getting the word out,” said Michael Torrence, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs. “They have been behind us. It’s why our enrollment has spiked. It’s pretty exciting,”

More students creates the need for more classes. “We’ve been adding multiple sections of courses, including more in the evening. That’s a good indicator of the popularity of our program,” Torrence said.

Vol State offers classes at CHEC through a partnership with Tennessee Tech University. CHEC is located at 1000 Neal Street in Cookeville. 

Congrats to everyone in Cookeville and on the main campus for making this happen. And a special kudos to our new Vol State in Cookeville director, Lori Richards.

Vol State in the News

Faculty member Tim Farris is already thinking about next August...why? The Tennessean has the story.

Guns on campus is back in the news. WSMV came to campus to see what people think of the law now that it has been implemented.

There is still time to get tickets for the Harvest Moon Soiree on September 16. The Foundation scholarship fundraiser is in it's tenth year. The Lebanon Democrat has the story.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Students Love the New SRB Humanities Building

The student reaction to the new SRB Humanities Building has been exciting. Sure, they spent most of their time on the first day of the fall semester trying to find their classes. But we asked those who did have a moment what they thought.

"I think it's really awesome," said Hadley Brennan of Nashville. "I'm a first-time freshmen here. It's so beautiful."

"It's nice and clean. I like the extra space for students. There's no reason to be cramped when you're learning," said Jordan Belote of Nashville.

"I find it easy to get around and the classrooms are really nice," said Cadie Dark of Hendersonville. She was sitting in the sun and looking out over the plaza as she studied on the second floor. "It's great to have space like this to do homework and stuff."

"It's pretty," Janiaya Turner of Hendersonville said. "I also like the elevators."

The first class for the new group of Honors Students was held in their specially designed classroom, which allows for plenty of discussion and collaboration, hallmarks of the Honors program. And it doesn't stop there. Honors has a whole suite with a study room and offices.

It was an incredible effort by so many to get the new building not only up and running, but looking spectacular. We'll have more on the many people responsible for the first day success coming up soon.

Dr. Faulkner: The Fourth Industrial Revolution

I prepared this blog entry back in the Spring before I decided I would make this part of my convocation address.  Some of this you heard already.  Some is additional information.

I just finished reading The Fourth Industrial Revolution by Klaus Schwab (World Economic Forum, 2016).  In the book, Schwab proposes that we are in the midst of another revolution.  The first revolution was the transition from foraging to farming, the second the industrial revolution which transitioned us from muscle power to mechanical power and the third which is usually called the computer or digital revolution.  The book outlines that what we are experiencing is not merely a continuation of the digital revolution.  To support the concept, the author lists factors such as the exponential velocity of changes, the breadth and depth of the changes, and the fact that the changes involve the transformation of entire systems.  Schwab cites megatrends in three main areas of change.  First he refers to changes in the physical manifestation including autonomous vehicles, 3D printing, advanced robotics, and new materials.  The second area is in the digital realm pointing mainly to the Internet of Things (IofT).  And finally the book explores innovations in the biological realm pointing to 3D printed organs and genetic modification as indicators.

Here are some quotes from the book:

·         -Already in 2012, the Google Inside Search team published that it takes about the same amount of computing to answer one Google Search query as all the computing done – in flight and on the ground – for the entire Apollo program!
·         -The Ford GT has 10 million lines of computer code in it.
·         -The new model of the popular VW Golf has 54 computer processing units; as many as 700 data points get processed in the vehicle generating six gigabytes of data per car.  (I wonder how many are used to circumvent pollution laws.)
·         -More than 50 billion devices are expected to be connected to the internet by 2020.  Even the Milky Way, the earth’s galaxy, contains only around 200 billion suns!
·         -Already last year, according to BMW 8% of cars worldwide, or 84 million, were connected to the internet in some way.

This is a picture I made of a 3D printed car that was on display at an innovation conference held in Nashville last year.

All these parts of the fourth revolution will lead to new ways of doing business and new approaches to wealth i.e. Bitcoin.  How companies do business will be drastically different.  From the book:

·         -Uber, the world’s largest taxi company, owns no vehicles.  Facebook, the world’s most popular media owner, creates no content.  Alibaba, the most valuable retailer has no inventory.  And Airbnb, the world’s largest accommodation provider, owns no real estate.

The horizon for these changes is the year 2025.  It is interesting that this coincides with our own state Drive to 55 efforts.

The questions for us are:
·         -How will this change the ways we conduct the business of the college?
·         -How will this change the ways we deliver instruction?
·         -How will this change the expectations of students?
·         -How can we capitalize on these changes to be more efficient, effective and above all, more relevant?

Viva la Revolución!

-Dr. Jerrry Faulkner

Criminal Justice Students in Service

After several months of hard work and training, three Vol State Criminal Justice students- Kaleb Helson, Shawn Marr and Daniel Layne  graduated to become Gallatin Police Reserve officers on Thursday August 18. They took the police officer oath and had their badges pinned on by family members. Criminal Justice Director Kevin Cook explains how it all came about:

For the last three years, students taking CRMJ 1150-Criminal Justice Career Planning had the opportunity to do mock police candidate panel interviews with several police departments/officers in our service area," Cook said. "Several of our Social Science and Education Division faculty, including Dean Foley, Angela Neal Brooks, David Fuqua and Rick Parrent, were panel participants as well. The Gallatin Police Department was one of the partners on the panel. They were very impressed with our students and invited them to apply for the Gallatin Police Reserves."

Cook said, this is the third reserve class to graduate with Vol State Criminal Justice students. Six former Vol State Criminal Justice students who became reserves have been hired full time by the Gallatin Police Department. 

Congrats to these newest reserves and to the Vol State Criminal Justice program. And congrats to Derrick Walker, the  Vol State Criminal Justice graduate and Gallatin reserve officer, was recently hired full time.

Vol State in the News

The Cyber Defense program has received much attention with it's launch for the fall semester.  The Tennessean ran the story recently.

Vol State students traveled the world during Study Abroad trips earlier this year. Vol State at Livingston professor Dr. Girija Shinde led a group to the Galapagos Islands. The Herlad Citizen has the story.

EMS instructor Kevin Alspaugh received a statewide teaching honor recently. Here's the story in the Hendersonville Standard.

Vol State Grad is Top Mayor for Tennessee

Congratulations to Ken Wilber, the Mayor of Portland in Sumner County. He has been named the 2016 Mayor of the Year by the Tennessee Municipal League. There are 346 mayors in Tennessee, so it's quite an honor. Wilber has an associate of science degree from Vol State, which he earned back in the 1980's while he was serving on the Portland City Council. He has served for three terms as Mayor of Portland.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Award for Logistics Grad

Fred Potts, Logistics Technical Certificate Graduate for Spring 2016, received recognition at the 2016 LGM Advisory Board Meeting as Tennessee Career Center "Veteran of the Year" for 2016. Fred works at the Kroger Distribution Center in Portland, and Fred received his award from Bethany Sullivan, Director of Workforce Essentials for the Tennessee Career Center. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Lifelong Learning Lectures Start Soon

Help us get the word out....especially if you know someone who is looking for a fun way to use their brain this fall for daytime Friday lectures:

KEY Lifelong Learning Lecture Series

Shakespeare, World War II and Biotechnology are just a few of the lecture subjects in the KEY Lifelong Learning Program at Vol State starting in September. KEY stands for “Keep Educating Yourself.” There are several lectures scheduled and each has multiple meeting days. The fee to enroll in one or all of the lectures in the series is $49. The daytime lectures start the week of September 9 and continue on Fridays through October. Everyone is welcome to register to attend. The topics include: “DNA, GMOs, and CRISPR: Understanding the Alphabet Soup of Biotechnology and What it Means to You;” The Nature of Creativity and the Creative Process;” Theories of the Good Life;” “World War II Lectures;” and “400 Years Later: The Relevance of Shakespeare in Our Modern Lives.”

KEY participants will also learn about a special opportunity for travel to Ireland with a Vol State group in March of 2017. The lectures will be held on the Vol State campus at 1480 Nashville Pike in Gallatin. People can register by calling Vol State Continuing Education at 615-230-3358 or visiting in person at the 300 Building, room 106, on the east side of the Vol State campus. For a complete list of lecture series dates and descriptions visit

Monday, August 8, 2016

Harvest Moon Soirée Celebrates Ten Years of Funding Student Dreams

The Volunteer State College Foundation Harvest Moon Soirée has raised more than a half-million dollars for student scholarships over the last ten years. The tradition of helping Vol State students afford their dreams will continue on Friday, September 16 at the Bluegrass Yacht and Country Club in Hendersonville. Organizers are hoping for record breaking donations to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the event. Tickets are on sale now. The Soirée will feature a silent auction again this year.  A few of the items will include: lunch with Gallatin Mayor Paige Brown; lunch with Hendersonville Mayor Scott Foster; a guided wildflower walk; Nashville Symphony tickets; a handmade cellarette by John B. Garrott; and longtime contributor, Cresent Fine Furniture, will donate a unique item to the auction.

Writer and humorist Lisa Smartt will be the entertainment for the evening. The syndicated columnist from rural Tennessee travels the country telling funny, and inspiring, stories of her personal weaknesses, struggles, and what she describes as the sheer joy of daily living. Organizers say she has been popular with attendees at other Vol State events.

The evening will begin at 5:30 p.m. with cocktails and the silent auction. Dinner and entertainment will follow. Sponsorship packages, tables, and individual seats are available through Friday, September 9, while space is available. Individual tickets are $75 each. The returning Titanium and event title sponsor this year is Sumner Regional Medical Center. Sponsorships are still available. Please contact Deb Daugherty at 615-230-3526 or for more information. For tickets call the Foundation at 615-230-3506, or visit

The 2016 Harvest Moon Soirée committee includes: Shirley Arrendale, Wanda Faulkner, Andrew Finney, Jim Harding, Mary Holtman-Reed, Diane Hughes, Dixie Jones, Hilary Marabeti, Laurette Nuckols, Sandy Webster, and Betty Zuccarello.

Pictured: Bill and Amanda Sinks peruse the auction items at the 2015 Harvest Moon Soirée. Photo by Don Claussen.